Firms' earnings in first quarter beat forecasts
First-quarter earnings have beaten forecasts so far, as companies from Apple to Novartis wring more profit from operations worldwide.
Since April 11, 71pc of MCSI World Index members reporting results have topped analysts' estimates for earnings per share, according to Bloomberg data. Profits of the 188 companies have beaten forecasts by 8.8pc.
Companies are exceeding estimates by using productivity measures to get more out of workers and factories.